back to article Huawei's latest smartphone for the UK market costs £1,299. And yes, that's without Google apps

UK punters with an aversion to Google and a spare £1,299 burning a hole in their pockets will soon be able to get their hands on the Huawei P40 Pro+. The P40 Pro+ expands on the already formidable P40 Pro. Most specs remain the same, with the display and Kirin 990 5G platform unchanged. However, base storage sees a bump from …

  1. Christopher Reeve's Horse

    Nearly spat my tea out

    No-wei this Huawei’s going my-wai, okaei!

    That’s a lot of dosh for something that will be practically worthless in about 2 years, even if you can stomach the epic inconvenience of a hobbled ecosystem. I wouldn’t even be tempted at half that price.

    1. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: Nearly spat my tea out

      That’s a lot of dosh for something that will be practically worthless in about 2 years, even if you can stomach the epic inconvenience of a hobbled ecosystem. I wouldn’t even be tempted at half that price.

      That's a very premium price for a phone that won't have premium residuals.

      I dislike iPhones and prefer android, but I understand when I buy the phone that it'll be near worthless later, so I don't buy anything near that price. I think my most expensive android was over a grand cheaper.

      Huawei make good phones (I've had a few of them), but for this kind of price I want the apps I use and I want no dicking about to get them. I might be tempted if they knocked a grand off, but that is really about the only way I would.

      1. teknopaul Silver badge

        Re: Nearly spat my tea out

        I'm not interested in any Huawei phone news until Reg's pun-o-matic headline generator is let loose on the Huawei Five-O.

        1. Mast1

          Re: Nearly spat my tea out

          Surely Noawei Huawei Five-G ?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Nearly spat my tea out

      And once all your neighbours will know you such an insane amount of money one can pitch easily, they'll start robbing your house at night for the phone !

      Crazy

    3. John H Woods Silver badge

      Re: practically worthless in about 2 years ...

      ... which will be exactly the right time to consider buying one!

  2. idiottaxpayerhere previously ishtiaq/theghostdeejay
    Thumb Up

    A google free telephone?

    Take my money… PLEASE

    Who needs "apps" when you have a browser. Besides, if it pisses off "bunker boy" I want one.

    Cheers… Ishy

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: A google free telephone?

      If you don't like Google, and I'm with you there, I don't understand your happiness about Huawei's current lineup. Avoiding Google can be done for much cheaper. Lineage OS provides a nongoogled interface with a long history of security and feature updates, and it supports a lot of devices. If your view is as described in your comment and you don't even care about Android app compatibility, there are even more options. There are existing extremely-private devices made for Ubuntu touch as well as other concept browser-only devices.

      Furthermore, while paying a massive amount for this device, you only avoid the Google-particular data collection. Instead, you enroll yourself in Huawei's. While I may trust Huawei to have fewer nefarious uses for my data, I wouldn't be that eager to replace Google with them. Especially considering that the alternatives I list above remove me from Google's collection without adding me to anyone else's. So unless you hate Google just because they irritate you but not for privacy or security reasons, this seems like a faulty method of escaping it.

  3. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

    Without Google, the phone is next to useless. Google Docs, Google Maps, syncing Google Calendar, Google Contacts? Nope. No facebook, twitter and the like. What is the point? I mean serious, what is the point? Why not buy a relatively inexpensive Android phone for, say, £300 and spent another £700 on a really good camera.

    Actually why not just buy an OK camera for £250? It'll still be better than a camera on a phone you can't post photos from.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      OTOH

      And phone without Google is good in my eyes. With Google, you are their prime source of data. Then they'll profile you and sell it to Advertisers.

      At least with this device (excluding the price) you are free of their snooping.

      1. Luuccarl

        Re: OTOH

        I totally agreed. We need more competition. I hate google doc. I am using MS office anyways. Who cares for not having google.

        1. Guildencrantz

          Re: more competition

          It's very typical that Chinese firms produce and export below actual cost, the latter being artificially distorted by among other things state-backed credit at unrealistically low interest rates and without collateral or even firm repayment demands of the kinds we see in the UK.

          This represents an attack on market competition, rather than favouring it.

      2. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

        Re: OTOH

        I don't care about google profiling me or whatever. If I want a phone, I want apps on it. I might as well but an old-fashioned dumbphone if I can't load apps. Or if the app experience is limited. And if I don't want google, I'll buy an iPhone.

      3. ratfox Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: OTOH

        At least with this device (excluding the price) you are free of their snooping.

        You wish

    2. Snake Silver badge

      Google

      Why you would want Google around both you, or your data, is certainly a round of questioning.

      I have almost everything Google disabled, and I've certainly been considering going root and open source for more than a while now.

    3. mark l 2 Silver badge

      Google Docs, Maps, Facebook and Twitter can all be used in a browser without the need to have the app installed.

      But I am surprised no one on here has mention that you can install the Google Play store pretty trivially on Huawei phone that doesn't come with it installed by default and then you would get access to all the apps from the Play store, and it doesnt require you to root the phone to do.

      Google could make it harder for people to do this if they wanted but it's in their own interest for it to be not too hard to do, as after all they make their money collecting your data and showing your ads. So they want as many people using Google services as possible.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I think the buying a separate camera has long since passed. If you rly on a camera for your job or you are a serious amateur, then fine.

      For nearly everyone else have a really good smartphone is a lot more useful. I have a decent Nikon SLR, but to be honest unless I'm specifically going somewhere to take pictures then every picture is taken on my smartphone and for the family photo album it is just as good and far more useful.

    5. IGotOut Silver badge

      "Google Docs, Google Maps, syncing Google Calendar, Google Contacts? Nope. No facebook, twitter and the like. What is the point? "

      Don't have any of those enabled on my phone. Works fine.

      Maps? Here. Far superior.

      Calendar, Contacts...nope Etar synched with my NextCloud...along with photos, notes, Contacts, Tasks, files, OTP, and much more...hell I can even track my phone. All under my control.

      But I still can't switch to totally none Google, just for some of the apps I need.

      Hopefully. Maybe when the EU force them to unbundle.

    6. martinusher Silver badge

      No google?

      >Without Google, the phone is next to useless.

      Life without Google analytics is actually very relaxing. For that 'must have' Google map (which, surely, you can reach through a browser?) you can carry a burner phone.

      1200 pounds for a phone -- any phone -- is a bit steep. For that money I'd expect it to come with its own security guard.

  4. Zolko
    Paris Hilton

    It's a marketing coup

    I'm sure Huawei people also know that very few people will buy this, and they make this phone only for the show. To showcase what they're able to do. The real devices they want to sell in quantities will be the little brothers of this one. Like: client walks into a shop to see this beast, is impressed by it, then looks at the price, is impressed by it, then the salesperson then suggests the "cheaper" siblings, and client walks away thinking he saved money by not buying the expensive stuff.

    1. John H Woods Silver badge

      Re: It's a marketing coup

      Yep, if you like Huawei but also like thrift, go for their Honor sub-brand. Son's got an Honor nearly as good as the equivalent Huawei for half the price, and I've got a perfectly servicable smartwatch (Honor Band 5) for less than the price of a bottle of half-decent gin (£30).

      1. AIBailey Silver badge

        Re: It's a marketing coup

        I've been impressed in the past with Huawei phones (I've had one, my wife has one, my son had one and now has a Honor).

        However, it was only recently that I discovered that in later version of EMUI. they've intentionally removed the option to install apps to the SD card. This was found out the hard way when Mrs B was no longer able to install anything without deleting other apps first.

        There's no workaround short of rooting, and by doing that you probably lose access to online banking from the phone.

        I was considering a Honor for my next handset, but unfortunately this restriction has put me right off.

        1. Chz

          Re: It's a marketing coup

          Most of the Android makers have done this. As of some version of Android, you can only install apps to the SD card if it's formatted to be a part of the system. If you do this, you can install apps there freely but removing the SD card will crash the phone. And accidentally formatting the card once you've removed it does even Worse Things.

          Rather than provide support for the inevitable, most vendors just disabled the feature. I'd blame Google. The SD card app support was always shonky. They never should have included it half-baked the way they did back in Android 2.2 (or whatever - it's at least that old). Never worked well on my HTC Desire or anything else I've had since.

        2. Lazlo Woodbine Bronze badge

          Re: It's a marketing coup

          No point having an install to SD Card option when the P20, P30 & P40 don't have any kind of SD card slot.

          I don't know if this is the case with Honor phones

  5. Eponymous Bastard

    Banking?

    No Google, no banking apps? TBH they're the most useful things on my Note and I would miss them too much to abandon the "horrors" of the Chocolate Factory. Apple is anathema.

  6. DavCrav Silver badge

    £1299 for a phone. Yeah, it can also take pictures, but they'd have to, you know, come to life, for me to spend over a grand on one.

    This is getting beyond a parody. Essentially, all phones, from £130 to £1300, do more or less the same thing. The top end ones open websites slightly faster and take much better photos, although unless you are using them to reconstruct crime scenes or for professional reasons* you don't need 50MP, especially when you will mostly view them on a phone screen.

    The world is mad.

    * such as reconstructing crime scenes.

    1. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

      Not quite true. The low-end phones, even from reputable manufacturers like Samsung, are too slow. You take a picture, you have to wait half a minute while it retrieves it from its slug-like memory. Try switching between apps? not enough RAM. Try downloading an app? not enough storage left. The models made by random Chinese manufacturers are even worse.

      No, you need to spend a bit more to get a 'decent' phone that can do more than just make calls. Unless you go for the used market of course.

      1. DavCrav Silver badge

        My Samsung phone is a couple of years old and cost around £200 when new. (This is the Galaxy A5 (2017).) It takes a few seconds to access the gallery, yes. Indeed, over USB connection my PC takes longer to access the phone's gallery. If it costs another £500 or more to obtain a phone that can save me those few seconds, I will keep that money and spend it on something else, thanks.

        I haven't bothered to put an SD card in it because I don't use many apps, but I could if I wanted to and that would remove your other point. I have never had the out of memory problem.

  7. Evil Harry

    I'm pretty sure that with the amount of calls back to Huawei servers that I see my phone trying to make, a "Google free"phone doesn't necessarily mean privacy.

    1. Lazlo Woodbine Bronze badge

      We had a security company put a traffic analyser on our network for a month to see what naughtiness the kids were up to.

      They were terribly disappointed that there was absolutely nothing nasty to support (well, there wouldn't be, they're hardly likely to waste effort cracking through the firewall when we've got a phone mast on the hill and unlimited data allowance) but what we did notice was just how much traffic went from Huawei phones back to China.

      We also noticed the treadmills in the gym were also contacting Taiwan with 300 byte packets every 15 seconds...

  8. crayon

    "Lineage OS provides a nongoogled interface with a long history of security and feature updates, and it supports a lot of devices."

    I use LineageOS on a Samsung Note 3 and it's great. I can get everything I need from f-droid except Here maps (but I can get that from elsewhere). However to say that it supports a lot of devices is a bit misleading. Yeah there are a lot of devices but most of them aren't exactly modern or readily available. I was going upgrade to a (2nd hand) Note 4 as that's the last model that has a removable battery - but reading the stories about some having dodgy EMMC has made me wary. I would love to upgrade to a newer phone that can run LineageOS and can take photos at least as good as my 808 Pureview which packed up last year.

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      I'll grant that. Compared to Huawei's Googleless lineup, however, it's a lot more devices. If you restrict yourself to subsets with certain features, you'll soon run into limits. Sadly, the software landscape on phones seems to do that to us. Xiaomi and OnePlus will probably be better manufacturers to check for modern devices, but no guarantees about feature availability.

  9. Guildencrantz

    Privacy

    Quite surprised people on this forum arguing their data is safer, with a de facto branch of the Chinese government which carries out regular military interoperability exercises with Russia, than it is with, say, Google.

    1. alain williams Silver badge

      Re: Privacy

      It all depends on who you think will do you more harm.

  10. Ashto5

    Wow just wow

    That is a crazy price, good luck to anyone who pays it.

    Apples latest is also an off the scale price.

    I purchased outright an iPhone 8 for less than £400 it does everything I need.

    The money saved I can get a 3 year old twin Xeon desktop with 128gb a 500gb raid 5 ssd setup and g cards to support 8 monitors.

    Hmm but it is shiny ....

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